From a very young age, one of Neven's favourite pastimes was to shadow his mother in the kitchen, watching her cook; his pastime soon became ...
250g (9oz) white fish trimmings and/or bones (such as lemon sole, brill or plaice bones)
3 leeks, trimmed and chopped
3 carrots, chopped
1 fennel bulb, chopped
Large handful of fresh parsley, roughly chopped
175ml (6fl oz) dry white wine
Rinse the fish bones and trimmings of any blood, which would make the stock look cloudy and taste bitter. Place into a large heavy-bottomed stockpot with the leeks, carrots, fennel and parsley. Pour in the white wine, then add 2.4 litres (4 pints) cold water to cover the fish and vegetables. Place on a high heat and bring to a simmer. After 5 minutes, remove the scum that forms on the surface with a spoon and discard. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for about 25 minutes, skimming as necessary.
At the end of the cooking time, remove the stock from the heat and strain, discarding the fish trimmings and the vegetables. Cool and store in a plastic covered jug in the fridge and use as required.
Cook Ahead: Store in the fridge for up to 3 days. Alternatively, once the stock is made you can reduce it further and then freeze it in ice cube trays (freezing it this way means you can defrost as little or as much as you need at a time).